Sunday, March 22, 2009

AIG and the Monkeys

AIG is the insurance company that collided with a financial iceberg and which Congress has given billions and billions of our dollars. AIG took some of that money and paid some of its executives hundreds of millions of dollars in bonuses. Everyone is mad at AIG and Congress, so Congress (and Obama) are screaming at AIG and enacting legislation to create a special tax to get the bonus money back.

Now then.

The agreement that Congress created and which AIG signed before the money was given over last fall included language that specifically okayed the bonuses. So the first thing to say is that Congress has zero credibility in showing outrage now.

Most Congressmen are saying that they didn't know the language was in the agreement. This indicates one of two things: 1) These Congressmen are lying; or 2) They are incompetent, voting for something they don't understand. Neither one of these options reflects well on these buffoons.

The language was eventually traced back to Democrat Senator Christopher Dodd, chairman of the Senate Banking Committee. He has been one of the loudest critics of the bonus money -- no hypocrisy there -- and at first denied knowing anything about the language in the agreement.

Let's back up for a moment. In his notorious appearance on the Tonight Show, Obama said he was "stunned" when he learned about the AIG bonuses. That would indicate some level of surprise, right? Stay tuned.

Back to Dodd. On Tuesday, March 17, in an interview, Dodd denied knowing anything about wording in the agreement that specficially provided for bonuses to be paid to executives. The next day, Dodd said that his words had been "misunderstood," and that he had, in fact, inserted the specific wording.


Now it gets interesting. Remember how "stunned" Obama was at learning of the bonuses? Dodd claims that he inserted the language okaying the bonuses against his own judgment but under pressure from the administration. So either Obama is lying, or Dodd is lying, or they are both lying. Regardless of the answer to that question, it is evident that they are both incompetent.

And incidentally, AIG has been the fourth-largest political contributor to Democrat Senator Chris Dodd over the course of his political career.

The AIG situation is what it is. The government should never have given them any money in the first place. Now that it has, though, members of Congress look like a bunch of chattering monkeys trying to get their faces on television so that they can show us how they, too, are enraged at the bonuses -- blithely stepping past the fact that they approved the bonuses in the first place.

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